Don’t Follow the Pack: 7 Reasons a Sedan Is Better Than an SUV

The tabled have turned on sedans. Today, nearly eighty percent of all vehicles sold in the United States are SUVs and trucks. Sedans used to make up that portion of the market, but the movement toward unibody crossovers has changed the entire automotive world. We now have automakers that offered historic numbers of sedans without a single one in their lineup any longer.

We certainly understand the benefits of SUVs and trucks in the market, but there are still some reasons why you might want to drive a sedan and not an SUV. These are seven reasons you should choose a sedan over an SUV.

1. Sedans typically get better fuel mileage

Silver Audi A4 Sedan on a curved road
Audi A4 Sedan | Audi

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 If you have an SUV and a sedan that use the same powertrain, the sedan will be more efficient. A car is lighter and more aerodynamic than an SUV, which provides an advantage to the smaller vehicle. Using the example provided by CarBuzz, the BMW 330i and X3 sDrive30i are both powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine. The sedan returns 26 city/36 hwy mpg while the SUV can only reach 23 city/29 hwy mpg.

2. Many sedans are safer to drive

The taller stance and higher roofline create a higher center of gravity in an SUV. This means that SUVs are more prone to rollover than sedans are. This factor has translated to many SUVs receiving lower scores in safety tests than similarly-built sedans. If we look at the same two BMW models for this comparison, the BMW 3 Series has a five-star safety rating from the NHTSA. This is partly due to the low 9.2 percent rise of rollover versus the 17.2 percent risk for the X3, which has a four-star rating.

3. Sedans tend to be more affordable than SUVs

2022 BMW X1 Driving on  Dirt Road
The 2022 BMW X1 is one of the best luxury subcompact SUVs for 2022, according to U.S. News | BMW

The difference in weight between our two experimental vehicles is approximately 500 pounds. The BMW X3 requires 500 pounds of additional materials to give it the build you find. This added weight and size translates to a higher cost. Putting this into figures, we see the BMW 3 Series starts at $41,450 while the entry-level X3 will require you to pay $43,700. An additional comparison to prove this point can be found at Toyota. The Toyota Corolla sedan starts at $20,175, while the Corolla Cross has a starting price of $22.195.

4. Driving dynamics are better in a sedan

The faster you drive and the harder you go through tourns, the closer you want to be to the pavement. This is simple physics at work. Racing teams don’t develop their racing cars to sit high above the ground and then expect them to go hard through the corners. The driving dynamics of a sedan are much better than in a similarly-equipped SUV.

5. The sedan body style is sleeker than an SUV

Front view of black 2022 Kia Stinger, which offers a deal to save money in Winter 2022, according to U.S. News
2022 Kia Stinger | Kia

While some SUVs have coupe-like rooflines that appear sportier than others, sedans are sleeker. The low profile and wide stands allow sedan models to be much sportier and more stylish. The inherent goal of an SUV is utilitarian functions. When you look at a Toyota Corolla Cross and Corolla sedan together, you can easily see the difference in the sporty and sleek design.

6. Cargo security is better in a sedan

It would be impossible to argue for a sedan compared to an SUV when considering the cargo area, but the cargo security award goes to the sedan. A closed and locked trunk is much more secure than an open area in the rear of a vehicle. Most SUVs have a large rear window, allowing ne’er-do-wells to peek in and see what’s in the rear. They can’t do that with a sedan.

7. Cars are faster than SUVs

Power might not make a difference when you’re going to stay between the lines, but if it does, you’ll want to drive a car. Looking at our BMW pair once again, the power from the 2.0-liter engine is 255 horsepower and 294 lb.-ft. of torque for both vehicles. Even though these two have the same power, the BMW 330i can reach sixty mph, nearly half a second faster than the BMW X3.

Should you drive a sedan or an SUV?

Car and Driver breaks this question down for us. If you’re looking for a spacious cabin, more capability, and better outward visibility, an SUV is the right choice for you. On the other hand, when you’re searching for a vehicle with better safety, fuel economy, drivability, and a lower price, you’ll want to select a sedan.

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